CDI Seeks Victims of Phony Scam

November 11, 2003

Investigators with the California Department of Insurance (CDI) are seeking more victims of an elaborate insurance scam that was allegedly orchestrated by a West Sacramento agent/broker.

Terry Lowell Ballard, 58, was arraigned Oct. 31 in San Joaquin County Court and charged with 95 felony counts, including grand theft, forgery, and the filing of false or fraudulent claims or statements.

According to the CDI Investigation Division, Ballard allegedly collected premiums from customers yet failed to remit the money to insurance companies. Investigators said that victims in the case suffered uninsured losses in excess of $500,000.

The investigation of Ballard was conducted jointly by CDI and the San Joaquin County District Attorney’s Office. During the process investigators uncovered evidence reportedly suggesting that Ballard issued phony insurance certificates and binders of insurance to consumers after selling the policies. The victims assumed that the policies, covering general liability, commercial auto, and/or workers’ compensation, were valid. But when accidents or claims incidents occurred, they discovered that the coverage was not real.

Ballard operated Multi Unit Insurance Services in West Sacramento. The San Joaquin County District Attorney’s Office is prosecuting the case. CDI investigators suspect there may be more victims across the state who have either not come forward or are unaware they have purchased phony policies.

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